Start with pro-vetted must-haves for healthy shine, strength, and volume, then tackle your tress troubles head-on.

Expert-Recommended Hair Basics


An antioxidant-infused shampoo and hydrating conditioner will keep hair strong, glossy, and your color rich. We like Garnier Fructis Daily Care Fortifying Shampoo and Conditioner (available at drugstores).


To gently release knots rather than rip at them, glide Acca Kappa's Beechwood Small Comb through dry hair pre-shower to reduce tangles. When using on wet strands, work upward from ends (


No matter your length or texture, a silverdollar-size dollop of Redken Aerate 08 All-Over Bodying Cream-Mousse scrunched into damp strands leaves hair fuller and smooth.


The tourmaline-infused T3 Featherweight 2 shoots out more focused air than a standard dryer, which minimizes damage to ruffled cuticles (


The cost per use of this Mason Pearson Handy Boar Bristle Brush makes it a good investment, and it carries a lifetime warranty. Sturdy bristles pull oil from the scalp and distribute it to ends. Think instant conditioner (


Daily washes strip color and rob hair of moisture and shine. John Frieda Luxurious Volume Anytime Refresher sops up excess oil and alleviates the need for a full-on sudsing (

Tried-and-True Hair Solutions


The Cause: Genes from either parent -- not just your maternal grandfather -- determine how your hair follicles behave, but factors like stress, diet, and birth control pills can cause them to produce weaker strands -- and fewer of them.

The Fix: Unless you're Jason Bourne, you can't alter your genetic code. Keeping your scalp in tip-top shape, however, can optimize follicles' production cycles. Elizabeth Cunnane, a trichologist in New York City, suggests weekly treatments with (1) Philip Kingsley Exfoliating Scalp Mask, which lifts dead skin cells with sugar beet and deposits oil-controlling zinc. If you think your lifestyle might be at the, ahem, root of the issue, take a daily multivitamin, and be sure you're getting 65 grams of protein a day. Still shedding? Consult with your physician.

When to expect results: 6 months


The cause: Washing hair daily, chemical treatments, and heated tools draw moisture from hair. And while sun, salt, and sand may feed your soul, unfortunately this trio also sucks strands dry.

The fix: Your hair needs a tall glass of water (and some nourishing oils). A cream-based 2-in-1 shampoo, like L'Oreal Professionnel Absolut Repair Cellular Cleansing Balm, puts moisture back into the hair shaft ( for salons). Weekly, warm a tablespoon of (2) coconut oil in the microwave and work from root to tip, letting it soak in for 30 minutes. And if you're at the beach or the pool, rinse away dehydrating chlorine and salt with clean water post-dip.

When to expect: 6 months.


The cause: In a word, heat. Steamy temperatures from the shower, the sun, and your styling tools open up the cuticle, allowing pigment to slip out.

The Fix: Let's start from square one. The day before your color appointment, shampoo, then rinse hair with cider vinegar. "It removes the buildup that prevents dye from depositing evenly and deeply," says New York City colorist Kyle White of Oscar Blandi salon. To maintain vibrancy post-coloring, cleanse every other day with warm (not scorching) water and low-sulfate Ojon Color Sustain Color Revealing shampoo and conditioner ( And use a medium setting when heat-styling. It will still do the trick but with way less damage.

When to expect results: 6 months


The cause: Children don't have dull hair, and that's because they leave it alone. Any intervention at all, from overshampooing to over-styling, removes natural shineenhancing oils. Other culprits? Mineral-laden shower water and sticky stylers that attract dimming dirt and pollution.

The fix: Once a week, use a clarifying shampoo to dissolve gunk. New York City stylist Patrick Melville, of Patrick Melville Salon, loves the nondrying formula of Aveeno Pure Renewal Shampoo (available at drugstores). And two days before the main event, try a treatment like Rita Hazan Foaming Gloss, which seals the cuticle and leaves it flashbulb- ready (

When to expect results: 2 weeks


The cause: The tips of your hair have been around the longest, which means they're the weakest. Eventually, they all break in two, but heatstyling and razor-cutting makes that happen faster.

The fix: Silicone smoothers may temporarily bind them, but a haircut is the only sure cure, says Rodney Cutler, a New York City stylist and owner of Cutler salons. Schedule a snip every 10 weeks, which still allows for one-fourth inch of growth.

When to expect results: 6 months


The cause: Hair dye, rough styling, and environmental factors disrupt the tight, shingle-like structure of the hair shaft, leaving it open to fuzz-causing moisture.

The fix: Smooth and seal with a single serving of silk-proteinrich (3) Fekkai Reparative 3-Day Transformation. Mist the weakest zones -- the ends and face-framing layers -- before blow-drying or flat-ironing.

When to expect results: 2 weeks


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